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The Florida Statutes

The 2023 Florida Statutes (including Special Session C)

Chapter 535
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F.S. 535.08
535.08 Thoroughbred sales; administration of medications prior to sale; testing.
(1) No person shall administer to any thoroughbred horse offered for licensed public sale at a thoroughbred horse sale any substance that is recognized as an injectable, oral, or topical medication within 72 hours of the start of the sale session in which the thoroughbred horse is offered for sale unless the person is a licensed veterinarian and the medication is therapeutic or necessary for the treatment or prevention of an illness or injury.
(2) The administration of any such medication must be reported to the sales organization on a form provided for this purpose by the sales organization, signed by the attending veterinarian, which shall set forth the following information:
(a) Identification of the medication, amount, and strength.
(b) The date and time of administration.
(c) Identification of the horse‚Äôs name, age, sex, and entry number.
(d) The reason for administration.

The form must be filed with the sales organization no later than 12 hours after administration or 1 hour before the start of the sales session in which the thoroughbred horse is offered for sale, whichever would require the earlier filing. The sales organization shall make all such forms available to the public, and the availability of this information shall be publicized in any applicable sales catalog.

(3)(a) The state veterinarian, or any veterinarian designated by the department, may collect a blood sample from any thoroughbred horse offered or sold at a licensed thoroughbred horse sale for the purpose of determining if the horse has been administered a substance in violation of subsection (1). Such a test shall be performed at the request of the purchaser of any thoroughbred horse sold, if the purchaser makes such a request before taking physical possession of the animal and within 24 hours of the time of sale. The purchaser shall be solely responsible for the cost of the test, and payment shall be made to the sales organization. The sales organization shall then remit the cost of these tests to the department.
(b) Any such blood sample shall be delivered for initial testing to an official laboratory approved by the department. One-half of any such blood sample shall be used for initial testing, and the remaining one-half shall be stored for possible followup testing for a period of not less than 2 weeks after receipt of the initial test results.
(c) The seller may request followup testing in response to any positive test result within 48 hours after receiving actual notice of such a result. The seller shall be solely responsible for the cost of any followup testing. Upon request of the seller, the original laboratory and an additional laboratory selected by the seller and approved by the state veterinarian shall test the stored sample.
(d) If initial testing reveals that a horse has been administered a substance in violation of subsection (1) and followup testing by both laboratories confirms this conclusion or the seller does not request such testing within the 48-hour period provided, the consignor must accept return of the horse as unsold.
(e) The department shall, by rule, establish those medications and depressants for which a tolerance may be set that, if found in the blood sample, may be construed to be forbidden substances; shall establish procedures for the collection, handling, and storage of blood samples; and shall specify the type of test to be used. Until such time that a tolerance or test is established, a zero tolerance will be enforced.
(4)(a) Any person who violates subsection (1) commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in ss. 775.082 and 775.083. For a second or subsequent offense, such person commits a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in ss. 775.082 and 775.083.
(b) In addition to the penalties provided in paragraph (a), any person convicted of a violation of subsection (1) shall be barred from showing, exhibiting, or offering for sale at a licensed public sale any horse in this state for a period of 2 years from the date of the conviction.
History.s. 1, ch. 98-396.